Great Big Green Week Day Three
Kids’ Climate March
The kids didn’t go to school on Friday.
They all skived off in their thousands,
played Tory truant with Andrea Leadsom’s inbox,
swaggered, like silly socialist sausages,
past Katie Hopkins’ newsstand.
When we heard what they were doing,
we peered out of our office windows,
hands full of plastic packaging
and toxic toner cartridges.
The kids failed to listen to our elected representatives,
who warned of wasting precious time,
and the danger of disrupting schedules,
as they kept busy with their efficient,
swift and productive Brexit negotiations.
Instead, the kids persisted with their silly snowflake dreams,
went AWOL during English Lit and Art
to paint pithy, poignant, political placards,
bunked off Maths, Geography, Geology, Biology
to read educated articles on climate science,
biodiversity, extinction and statistics.
They ghosted Sociology, RE and languages
to meet together in socially conscious,
multi-faith, bilingual community groups,
missing out on Media Studies
to take part in panel discussion shows on the BBC
and launch powerful social media campaigns.
Then, by mid-afternoon, when they should have been
running in slow motion round the tennis court,
they could be seen marching miles through city streets,
with rosy cheeks and blazing eyes.
Simon Abbot, aged 15,
missed Chemistry and Human Reproduction
to hold Isla Finch’s hand
outside the Bristol council offices.
When she told him she was scared
about all the forest fires and insects dying,
he drew a ladybird on her hand and kissed it.
Yes, we will all remember the day the kids went on strike,
while our leaders scoffed and sneered at them
from inside their Twitter feeds,
trying to squash their heads between their fingers,
all those ignorant, naïve,
selfish, planet-obsessed children,
playing hooky in History lessons
to save their own future.
-Liv Torc www.livtorc.co.uk from her new book, The Human Emergency (2021)
link to some of his poems published online, then here are a selection:
– ‘Ecco the Dolphin’ on Ink, Sweat and Tears:
He says “Interested in the construction of ‘Nature’ in culture here, in a computer game in this instance.”
– ‘Please Do Not Touch the Walrus or Sit on the Iceberg’, on And Other Poems:
He says “I’m evolving the genre of ‘Ecophrastic’ poetry, inspired by natural history collections…Another such poem inspired by the Horniman opens the collection, but there are other museum poems dotted through.”
– ‘Ode on a Black Plastic Compost Bin’ on Atrium:
He says “Can ecopoetry be ecstatic, as well as mournful?”
– ‘If the Earth is My Mother’ – a video, sample poem promo:
He says of this : “Interested here in unpacking the gendered idea of ‘Mother Earth’ and making it very personal for me – and, I hope, the reader/listener.”
His book’s pre-order site :
Can drive anyone
To desperation, and
And toil are
Known thieves of time.
Then, while greed
Eats the garden you grew
For your family,
But don’t we
All have plenty of
-Samantha Terrell (Previously published in the Poets’ Choice Global Warming Issue)
Bios And Links
is a poet, artist and ideas weaver who plunders the vast caverns and dormant volcanoes of the human and planetary condition. A Radio 4 Slam winner, a former Bard of Exeter, host of The Rainbow Fish Speakeasy and of The Hip Yak Poetry Shack. Liv runs the poetry stage at WOMAD, the Hip Yak Poetry School and the lockdown haiku and photography project, Haiflu – as featured on the BBC’s Radio 4 Today Programme.
In 2019 her climate change in the face of motherhood poem The Human Emergency went viral and she performed at Glastonbury Festival and represented Somerset for the BBC’s National Poetry Day celebrations. In 2020 she was chosen as one of four Siren Poets by Cape Farewell for a commission on climate change in the time of COVID and for the BBC’s Make a Difference campaign.
Her books include Show Me Life (2015) and The Human Emergency (2021)
Find out more www.livtorc.co.uk
is a day-glo queero techno eco poet & facilitator, based in Bristol. His debut pamphlet, Wasted Rainbow, is published by tall-lighthouse in February 2021 (launching on Saturday 13th). His debut collection, This Fruiting Body, will be published by Nine Arches in October 2021. From 2020 – 22, he’s Bristol City Poet.
Tweet: @CalebParkin | Insta: @couldbethemoon | Website: www.couldbethemoon.co.uk